Optimum pacts for Haggis’ ‘Elah’

Theron, Jones, Sarandon star in film

U.K. distrib Optimum Releasing has made its biggest acquisition since it was bought by StudioCanal last May, picking up all U.K. rights to the Paul Haggis project “In the Valley of Elah” from Summit Entertainment.

Pic, written and directed by Haggis, stars Charlize Theron, Tommy Lee Jones and Susan Sarandon. It’s the story of a career officer investigating the disappearance of his son, a soldier who went missing on his way home from Baghdad.

“This is the first impact StudioCanal has had on Optimum from an acquisition point of view,” said Optimum topper Will Clarke.

“It’s the first of many steps that we are going to take into bigger budget, more mainstream movies.”

The distrib has also picked up two films from U.S. seller HDNet — Brian de Palma’s Iraq drama “Redacted” and the Hunter S. Thompson doc “Hunter.”

Optimum has also acquired three completed titles — “While She Was Out” from William Morris, starring Kim Basinger as a housewife lost in the woods and menaced by four murderous thugs; cannibal horror movie “Welcome to the Jungle” from Bauer Martinez; and French horror pic “Frontier(s)” from EuropaCorp.

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